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PRODUCTTPREVIEW : Gann's Performance Tackle

Date: 12/11/08
Tackle type: Lures
Manufacturer: Gann's Performance Tackle
Reviewer: Cal



Introduction: Jigs and blade baits are a staple in most every bass angler's arsenal and tackle store shelves are typically lined with products from several manufactures offering their take on these most basic a bass angler's weapon. In fact, the selection from which to choose in these two bait categories alone can often lead to peg board paralysis as a shopper tries to decide between one to a dozen different products. In these confusing situations, what separates one bait from the other sometimes does not seem as important as what separates one company from the other. Introducing a small bait company out of Northern California that is doing their best to put their stamp of quality on every single, individual bait they tie: Gann's Performance Tackle.

Introducing Gann's Performance Tackle and their line of jigs and blade baits.

Background: Gann's Performance Tackle was the brainchild of John Gann who started the company back in June of 1989. His very first sale was to local Northern California shop owner John Walton of Walton's Pond in San Leandro. Soon after starting the company John got some interest from overseas and it wasn't long before most of his product was being imported to Japan through the efforts of Norio Tanabe during the boom of their bass fishing industry. Unfortunately, as the economy in Japan turned, so did the interest in his product and as the years let on, and business slowed, John Gann started to lose his passion.


This is their Draggin' Jig featuring a modified football head.


Enter Mark and Jana Hiser who purchased Gann's Performance Tackle from John Gann during the Summer of 2007. The Hisers infused the company with some new energy and by the fall of that same year, product was once again lining store shelves. The transition was complete and the Hisers intend to not only sustain the company, but through their passion, grow the company and its product as far as their imagination and motivation will allow. Let's take a look at their array of quality, hand tied jigs and bladed baits.

This is one of their Flippin'/Pitchin' jigs featuring a cone shaped head for ease of fishing in the weeds.

Jigs: There are three different jigs in the Gann's Performance Tackle lineup. Each features Gamakatsu hooks, hand tied silicone skirts, and powder coated finishes topped by a clear top coat for the heads. Of particular interest in their jig lineup are the Draggin' Jigs which feature a modified football style head with a semi-concealed line tie and a flat bottom to help the jig sit a bit more stable on the bottom as it is being hopped or dragged.


Gann's Performance Tackle Jigs

  Head Style MSRP Sizes Skirt
Draggin' Jigs Modified Football $3.99 1/4, 3/8, 1/2, 3/4, 1 ounce Hand Tied 60 strand silicone
Flippin/Pitchin Cone Shaped $4.50 1/4, 3/8, 1/2 ounce Hand Tied 60 strand silicone
Hummer Jig Hybrid Arkie & Banana $3.99 3/8, 1/2, 3/4, 1 ounce Hand Tied 60 strand silicone


The Flippin'/Pitchin' jigs are available with these double rattle bands - easy to install and remove as needed.


An interesting accessory to their Flippin'/Pitchin' jig is the double rattle band that can be added to the jig or taken off rather easily. It even waves around in the water similar to a trailer when attached to the hook and is much easier to attach than the rattles that require attachment to a pre-existing band that doubles as the tie holding the skirt to the jighead.


Gann's PT also features a line of spinnerbaits.


The Stilleto series standard configuration of blades is one, cupped Indiana together with one large willow leaf blade.


Gann's Performance Tackle Blade Baits

  Blade Style MSRP Sizes Skirt
Stilleto Dual Blade $7.99 - $8.50 1/4, 3/8, 1/2 ounce Hand Tied 60 - 70 strand silicone
Night Series Single Colorado $7.99 - $8.50 1/4, 3/8, 1/2 ounce Hand Tied 60 - 70 strand silicone
Stealth Buzz Buzzbait $7.99 3/8, 1/2 ounce Hand Tied 60 strand silicone


Blades: The Stilleto series blades from Gann's Performance Tackle feature a keel weighted head concealing the bulk of the head beneath skirt to give the business part of the spinnerbait more of a baitfish profile. As with the jigs, all the bodies on their blade baits are powder coated and finished with a clear topcoat after which the 3D eyes are applied. For components, only Gamakatsu hooks and Sampo ball bearing swivels are used.


Each head is powder coated and finished with a protective clear coat.


The bulk of the weight on each spinnerbait is hidden under the skirt and culminates in this bait hangar which is set to be replaced on all their baits by a wire-type keeper.


The wire frames are .035 gauge stainless steel and chosen for extreme durability. The actual blades on these baits are jewelry grade (24 karat) plated although the painted blades are powder coated on one side and feature a nickel finish on the back.


A close-up of the modified Indiana blade on the Gann's PT Stilleto spinnerbait.

A design characteristic Mark Hiser shares with us is the hydrodynamics issue of the hidden weight style of spinnerbait. Apparently this body style can interfere with the churning of the front blade and to resolve this issue, most manufacturers use a small, flat willow. Gann's Performance Tackle typically uses an modified Indiana style blade that produces what they feel to be a smoother, faster spinning blade creating more lift and vibration than a willow, but not quite the same effect as a Colorado blade. Of course, as with any custom bait company, any blade configuration the customer desires is available, but the Willow/Indiana is their standard double blade offering with the Stilleto series.

Their Night Series single Colorado blade features this unique, arm mounted rattle.


But of course, that is not all. Gann's also offers a big, single Colorado blade spinnerbait titled their Night Series blade that comes standard with a unique rattle installed just below the big Colorado blade. This is another demonstration of offering something just a little different in pursuit of manufacturing a quality product.


A silly detail, but a good one. This hook point protector is a feature of all their baits.


Lastly, Gann's makes a Buzzbait entitled “ Stealth”. This series of buzzers are built on Gamakatsu hooks, with a .051 wire frame, and an offset bend to allow the bait to sit down for increased hook-ups. The powder coated base coat is finished with a clear top coat with sparkles and the 45 strand skirts are hand tied. Each bait is built with an Offset Delta style blade, and individually hand tuned. A single large bearing in front of the blade aids with initial startup spin and eases removal of debris. The back of the blade is serrated and adjusted to lay flat against the rivet head. Clacker models have the clacker standing on large bearings to maintain contact with the blade at all times. Each bait receives individual attention as it is being assembled to ensure it will squeal and squawk in a very short amount of time. The Stealth Buzzers are available in three-eighths and half ounce sizes.


 We like it because it stays in place, is easy to remove, and is not held in place by the hook's barb!


Availability: For now, the Gann's Performance Tackle product is available at only a handful of select retailers. They are busy working on a website where direct orders will be accepted, but prices here will be higher than at retail locations so as not to compete against their own retailers. One such retailer is Walton's Pond in San Leandro, California (1.510.352.3932). In the meantime, the Hiser's expect their website to go live before the end of the year.


A look at the flat underside of the Gann's PT Draggin' Jig.


Gann's PT Commitment: When we spoke to Mark Hiser regarding his company and what sets his product apart from that of the other jig and blade bait manufacturers out there, he responded with the following statement:


"The baits we build are intended to be quality tools for specific applications. When people open one of our packages, they have a bait that will perform as intended, out of the bag. there are no painted hook eyes, the swivels all spin, the blades are wiped down before packaging and will remain bright. The skirt colors and configurations will remain where they started. Each of these characteristics are intended to boost the confidence the fisherman in his tools so that he can concentrate on the task at hand. We all know that believing in your plan, and your tools will increase productivity if for no other reason than the increased time with the tool in the water."


If you covet quality in these types of baits, Gann's Performance Tackle should be on your short list of manufacturers to try out.


Conclusion: Attention to detail, manufacturing, and overall performance - there's not much else you can ask of a bait manufacturer when searching for a quality product. Mark and Jana Hiser are in the midst of taking a locally known, and well respected product and turning up the quality even further. They also have plans for some new product to debut shortly. Their goal is to ensure everyone who samples their product can reap the benefits of the effort they put into each individual bait. They have the confidence that once they have all that down, the rest will take care of itself and from what we've briefly sampled of their product, Gann's Performance Tackle is well on its way.










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